Maple and Cinnamon Spiced Nuts

Recently I made a batch of Maple Cinnamon Spiced Nuts and served them at a birthday dinner for my husband.  Pecans, cashews and almonds are coated in a small amount of maple syrup and beaten egg white, then tossed with sugar, salt, nutmeg, cinnamon, cardamon and a touch of cayenne pepper, and  baked until done (and delicious!). Maple Cinnamon Spiced Nuts / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
They were really quite good; we enjoyed them alongside other snacks/appetizers before dinner!  They are really easy to make – here’s how:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Whisk granulated sugar, cinnamon, salt, cardamom, nutmeg, and cayenne pepper in a small bowl until spices are well blended. Set aside.

Maple Cinnamon Spiced Nuts / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

In a separate large bowl, beat or whisk the egg white with the maple syrup until the liquid is bubbly and frothy.

Maple Cinnamon Spiced Nuts / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Add pecans, cashews and almonds to the egg white mixture. Stir well, to fully coat the nuts with the egg white/maple syrup mixture.

Maple Cinnamon Spiced Nuts / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Once the nuts are coated, add the spice mixture, and stir well, to fully coat the nuts with the spices.  Line a large (13×9) rimmed baking sheet with a layer of parchment paper.

Maple Cinnamon Spiced Nuts / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
Pour the coated nut mixture out onto a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Spread them out so they are in a single layer, separating them from each other as much as possible.  Place in oven and bake for 25-30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes (then re-spread them out), so the nuts and sugar won’t burn.

Maple Cinnamon Spiced Nuts / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

When they are done baking in 25-30 minutes (mine took 25), they will be dark brown, and almost all of the liquid will have dried onto the nuts.  Spread the nuts out on a clean piece of parchment paper or aluminum foil to let them continue drying (and are not sticky).

Maple Cinnamon Spiced Nuts / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
Store the nuts in an airtight container.  You can serve them as a wonderful tasting snack OR they would be a great gift idea for a friend any time of the year, when packaged in a cute mason jar or decorative container!

Maple Cinnamon Spiced Nuts / The Grateful Girl Cooks!Maple Cinnamon Spiced Nuts / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

These Maple Cinnamon Spiced Nuts are delicious! Not too sweet, not too spicy… just right!  Sure hope you will give this recipe a try. I really appreciated how easy they were to make!

Maple Cinnamon Spiced Nuts / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Recipe Adapted From: http://www.tablefortwoblog.com/maple-cinnamon-spiced-nuts/

Maple and Cinnamon Spiced Nuts
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
As Prepared By:
Recipe type: Snack
Serves: 3 cups
Ingredients
  • 1 egg white
  • 2 Tablespoons maple syrup
  • 2 cups pecans
  • ½ cup almonds
  • ½ cup cashews
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • 1½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon cardamom (optional- I left it out)
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon cayenne pepper
Directions
  1. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. Whisk granulated sugar, cinnamon, salt, cardamom, nutmeg, and cayenne pepper in a small bowl until spices are well blended. Set aside.
  3. In a separate large bowl, beat or whisk egg white with maple syrup until the liquid is bubbly and frothy.
  4. Add pecans, cashews and almonds to egg white mixture. Stir well, to fully coat the nuts with egg white/maple syrup mixture.
  5. Once the nuts are coated, add the spice mixture, and stir well, to fully coat the nuts with the spices. Line a large rimmed baking sheet with a layer of parchment paper.
  6. Pour the coated nut mixture out onto a parchment paper-lined large baking sheet. Spread them out so that they are in a single layer, and separate them from each other as much as possible. Place in oven and bake for 25-30 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes (then re-spread them out), so the nuts and sugar won't burn. When they are done in 25-30 minutes, they will be dark brown, and almost all of the liquid will have dried onto the nuts. Remove from oven, and spread the nuts out on a clean piece of parchment paper or aluminum foil to let them continue drying (and are not sticky). Store the nuts at room temperature in an airtight container. Enjoy!

Here’s one more to pin on your Pinterest boards!Maple Cinnamon Spiced Nuts / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

 

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Gingerbread Granola

I recently whipped up a batch of Gingerbread Granola ( in about 30 minutes!), and have really enjoyed having it around our house for a quick breakfast cereal or snack.Gingerbread Granola / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

I found the recipe on Pinterest, and made it up a few days after finding the recipe.  It was very quick and easy to make, and took only about 30 minutes, from start to finish! Here’s how to make this delicious granola, which features rolled oats, coconut, chopped nuts, dried cranberries (or raisins), and spices you would normally find in a great piece of gingerbread:

In a large mixing bowl, whisk molasses, oil, salt, cinnamon, cloves and ginger together until mixture is fully blended. To this mixture, add old-fashioned rolled oats, coconut, and chopped pecans or walnuts. Stir until all ingredients are fully coated.

Gingerbread Granola / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Gingerbread Granola / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Evenly divide the mixture and pour onto two large rimmed baking sheets (by spreading the mixture onto TWO baking sheets, it enables the granola to cook quicker). Spread the oats out on both sheets.  Bake in a preheated 325 degree oven for 25 minutes. Stir oats occasionally while they cook, then re-spread on sheets.

Gingerbread Granola / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

The granola is done when the oats have turned light brown (mine took 25 minutes, but may take you a couple minutes longer for total cooking time, as oven temps. vary). Once done, remove granola from oven, and stir in dried cranberries (or raisins).  Be sure to let the granola cool completely to room temperature before placing into an airtight container for storage.

I stored my granola in canning jars (filled a quart sized jar and a pint sized jar). This Gingerbread Granola would be a thoughtful gift to give (especially around Christmastime), OR just to have around the house to enjoy as a delicious granola cereal with milk for breakfast (or use in other ways). The flavor is very “gingerbread-like”. YUM.

Gingerbread Granola / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Gingerbread Granola / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Gingerbread Granola / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Hope you will consider trying this recipe.  This gingerbread flavored granola would also taste wonderful over ice cream or frozen yogurt, or mixed into a morning parfait with fruit and Greek yogurt! There are many possibilities for this simple yet tasty granola! Have a blessed day!

Gingerbread Granola / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Recipe Adapted From: http://kitchensimplicity.com/gingerbread-granola

Gingerbread Granola
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
As Prepared By:
Recipe type: Breakfast
Serves: 5½ cups
Ingredients
  • ⅓ cup molasses
  • 2 Tablespoons canola oil (or mild tasting oil)
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¾ teaspoon ground ginger
  • ¼ teaspoon ground cloves
  • 3 cups rolled oats (old-fashioned, not instant)
  • 1 cup flaked coconut
  • 1 cup pecans (or walnuts), chopped
  • ½ cup dried cranberries (or raisins)
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.
  2. In a large mixing bowl, add first 6 ingredients (molasses, oil, salt, cinnamon, ginger and cloves). Whisk these together until fully blended.
  3. Add rolled oats, coconut flakes and chopped nuts to molasses mixture; stir until oats, etc. are coated.
  4. Divide and spread mixture out evenly onto 2 large baking sheets (with rims). Bake at 325 degrees for 25-30 minutes. Stir oats occasionally (every 7-8 minutes), then redistribute them on baking sheets, and bake until the oats become light brown in color.
  5. Remove oats from oven and stir in dried cranberries (or raisins). Let the granola cool completely on the baking sheets before transferring to an airtight container, or serving. Enjoy!

Here’s one more to post on your Pinterest boards!Gingerbread Granola / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

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Chicken and Broccoli Alfredo Stuffed Shells

If you like chicken and broccoli, you will LOVE these Chicken and Broccoli Alfredo Stuffed Shells! Such a “comfort food” dish… with cheesy Alfredo sauce coating the chicken and broccoli inside jumbo sized pasta shells! Yum!Chicken and Broccoli Alfredo Stuffed Shells / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

There are so many ways to enjoy stuffed pasta shells, and this recipe caught my attention.  How can you go wrong with pasta, chicken, broccoli, AND cheesy Alfredo sauce?  We really enjoyed this fairly simple to prepare dinner.   We also enjoyed finishing off the leftovers the next day!  Here’s how to make these delicious stuffed shells:

Prepare the jumbo pasta shells by cooking according to the package directions. Cook until the pasta is al dente, then drain and place pasta shells on a large baking sheet to cool, separating them so they don’t stick together while cooling. Set aside.

Chicken and Broccoli Alfredo Stuffed Shells / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

While pasta is cooking/cooling, prepare the Alfredo sauce by combining butter, garlic, heavy whipping cream and milk in a pan on medium heat. Stir together ingredients and bring them to a low simmer (do NOT boil).  Place the egg yolks in a small bowl, beat until blended, then temper the eggs (this slowly raises the temperature of the egg yolks to prevent them from scrambling when they hit the simmering hot Alfredo sauce). To temper the eggs, add a spoonful of the hot Alfredo sauce to the egg yolks, whisking the mixture as you add. Repeat the process with several more spoonfuls, one at a time, whisking each spoonful into the eggs. Once you have done this, slowly drizzle the egg yolk mixture into the Alfredo sauce, whisking as you add.  Stir mixture well to combine, then remove pan from the heat.

Chicken and Broccoli Alfredo Stuffed Shells / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

After pan has been removed from heat, stir in 1/2 cup of mozzarella cheese and the Parmesan cheese. Stir to combine.  Season to taste, with salt and black pepper. Set aside.

Chicken and Broccoli Alfredo Stuffed Shells / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

In a large mixing bowl, combine shredded/chopped chicken, chopped steamed broccoli and 1/2 cup of the Alfredo sauce. Stir to combine.

Chicken and Broccoli Alfredo Stuffed Shells / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

To assemble: Place a couple spoonfuls of Alfredo sauce in the bottom of a 9×13 cake pan.  Place a large spoonful of the chicken/broccoli mixture into each pasta shell.  Place filled shells on top of sauce in pan.  Divide remaining sauce over the tops of the pasta shells, then sprinkle with the rest of the mozzarella cheese (1/2 cup).

Chicken and Broccoli Alfredo Stuffed Shells / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Bake, uncovered in a preheated 350 degree oven for 25 minutes. When done, the cheese sauce will be bubbling up around the shells, and cheese will be melted on top of shells. Remove pan to a wire rack, and let pasta shells cool for a minute before serving.

Chicken and Broccoli Alfredo Stuffed Shells / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Place pasta shells onto individual serving plates and spoon some of the remaining Alfredo sauce over the top.  Sprinkle with dried parsley flakes, if desired… and enjoy this delicious meal!

Chicken and Broccoli Alfredo Stuffed Shells / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

I hope you enjoy trying this stuffed shell recipe. My husband and I really appreciated the leftovers, as well (just as good the second time around).  Have a wonderful day, and strive to be kind. It’s so simple to do… and can really encourage or make an impact on someone who might be hurting.  May God bless you.

Chicken and Broccoli Alfredo Stuffed Shells / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Recipe Adapted From: http://tastesbetterfromscratch.com/chicken-broccoli-alfredo-stuffed-shells/

Chicken and Broccoli Alfredo Stuffed Shells
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Chicken and broccoli bake inside jumbo pasta shells atop a delicious creamy Alfredo sauce.
As Prepared By:
Recipe type: Entree
Serves: 4 servings
Ingredients
  • 1 (12 ounce) box of jumbo pasta shells
  • 3 cups cooked chicken, chopped (rotisserie chicken works well)
  • 1¾ cups chopped/steamed broccoli
For Alfredo Sauce:
  • 3 Tablespoons butter
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1¼ cup whole milk
  • ⅔ cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • ½ cup freshly grated Mozzarella cheese
  • 2 large egg yolks, beaten
  • Salt and black pepper, to taste
Garnish:
  • ½ cup freshly grated Mozzarella Cheese
  • Dried parsley flakes
Directions
  1. Prepare pasta shells according to package directions until pasta is al dente; drain and place pasta shells on baking sheet to cool, separating them so they don't stick together.
  2. While pasta is cooling, prepare Alfredo sauce by combining butter, garlic, heavy whipping cream and milk in a pan set on medium heat. Stir ingredients and bring them to a low simmer (do NOT boil). Place egg yolks in a bowl, beat until blended, then temper the eggs (this slowly raises the temp. of the egg yolks to prevent them from scrambling when they hit the simmering Alfredo sauce). To temper eggs, add a spoonful of the hot Alfredo sauce to the egg yolks, whisking as you add. Repeat process with 3-4 more spoonfuls, one at a time, whisking while adding. Slowly drizzle egg yolk mixture into the Alfredo sauce, whisking as you add. Whisk mixture well; remove pan from heat.
  3. Add ½ cup Mozzarella cheese and Parmesan cheese. Stir. Add salt and pepper; season to taste.
  4. In mixing bowl, combine chicken, cooked broccoli and ½ cup Alfredo sauce. Stir. Place a couple spoonfuls of Alfredo sauce in the bottom of a 9x13 cake pan. Place a large spoonful of the chicken/broccoli mixture into each shell. Place filled shells on top of sauce in pan.
  5. Spoon remaining sauce over the top of the shells; sprinkle with ½ cup mozzarella cheese.
  6. Bake (uncovered) at 350 degrees for 25 minutes. When done, the cheese sauce will be bubbling, and cheese will be melted on top. Remove pan to wire rack; let shells cool a minute before serving. Transfer shells to individual serving plates and spoon remaining Alfredo sauce over the top. Garnish with dried parsley flakes. Serve and enjoy!

Here’s another to pin on your Pinterest boards!Chicken and Broccoli Alfredo Stuffed Shells / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

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Homemade Catalina Salad Dressing

I recently made Homemade Catalina Salad Dressing from scratch… it was completely EASY to prepare, and it tastes FANTASTIC on a crisp mixed green salad!Homemade Catalina Salad Dressing / The Grateful Girl Cooks! This delicious salad dressing is made in a couple minutes with a few pantry ingredients!
The process was so easy you’re not even going to believe it!  I found the recipe through Pinterest, thought it sounded good, and decided to give it a try! I am sure glad I did, because now I can make my own Catalina dressing from home, with only a few simple pantry ingredients!

Here’s how completely easy it is to make: Place all the ingredients into a medium-sized bowl and whisk them together very well, until they are completely blended. Once completely blended, pour the salad dressing through a funnel into a clean, decorative jar (with a lid). THAT’S IT, folks!  How easy is that?  (**NOTE: You can also place the ingredients in a blender and pulse or blend for a minute).

Homemade Catalina Salad Dressing / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Homemade Catalina Salad Dressing / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Homemade Catalina Salad Dressing / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

I removed the dressing from my refrigerator just a few minutes before serving, gave it a good shake, then drizzled this delicious dressing over my mixed green salad.  Catalina Salad Dressing is also delicious on Taco Salad, too!  The dressing is so good, and it only took a couple of minutes to make, which is shorter than the time it takes me to get to a grocery store and pay much more for a name brand bottle that costs two to three times as much.  I like that!

Homemade Catalina Salad Dressing / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Hope you’ll give this recipe a try… I really think you’ll appreciate the convenience and simplicity of this yummy Catalina dressing on a delicious salad. The recipe can be easily doubled.  Have a fantastic day!

Homemade Catalina Salad Dressing / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Recipe Source:  http://www.littlehouseliving.com/homemade-catalina-salad-dressing-recipe.html#_a5y-p=2956216

Homemade Catalina Salad Dressing
 
Prep time
Total time
 
It's SO easy to make your own creamy Catalina Salad dressing to use on salads, taco salads, etc.
As Prepared By:
Recipe type: Salad Dressing
Serves: approx. 1 cup
Ingredients
  • ¼ cup ketchup
  • ¼ cup granulated sugar
  • ¼ cup Apple Cider Vinegar
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • ½ teaspoon paprika
  • ½ Tablespoon Worchestershire sauce
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • ½ cup mild tasting oil
Directions
  1. METHOD 1: Put all the ingredients in a medium bowl. Whisk until ingredients are thoroughly combined. METHOD 2: Place the ingredients into a blender and process until fully mixed.
  2. Pour into a covered bottle (a funnel makes this easy!) or container . Store in refrigerator. Shake or stir dressing before using.
Notes
If you use olive oil, you will need to take the salad dressing out of refrigeration about 10 minutes before serving, as the oil solidifies some during refrigeration.

Here’s another to pin on your Pinterest boards!Homemade Catalina Salad Dressing / The Grateful Girl Cooks! This delicious salad dressing is made in a couple minutes with a few pantry ingredients!

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Pan-Seared Salmon with Cilantro Lime Sauce

On my never-ending quest to find great salmon recipes, I recently stumbled upon this super simple and wonderfully delicious recipe for Pan-Seared Salmon with Cilantro Lime Sauce. We really enjoyed the flavors, and I appreciated how easy the salmon was to prepare!Pan-Seared Salmon with Cilantro Lime Sauce / The Grateful Girl Cooks! Absolutely delicious... and ready in about 10 minutes!
The recipe is as simple as pan-searing seasoned salmon fillets, then drizzling the cooked salmon with a creamy cilantro lime sauce… that’s it! (I told you it was EASY!). The entire recipe can be ready and on the table in just about 10 minutes! How’s THAT for convenience?  Here’s how to make this delicious main course:

Take salmon fillets out from refrigeration and let them sit (at room temp.) while you make the cilantro lime sauce.  To make the sauce, all you need to do is place sour cream, chopped green onions, cilantro, garlic, lime juice, sliced garlic, and salt into a food processor or blender. Process the sauce until the cilantro leaves are finely chopped or minced. Set sauce aside while cooking salmon.

Pan-Seared Salmon with Cilantro Lime Sauce / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Place cumin, coriander, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper in a small bowl, and mix well, to combine the spices.

Pan-Seared Salmon with Cilantro Lime Sauce / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Pat all sides of salmon fillets dry, using a paper towel. Sprinkle spice mixture evenly over both sides of salmon, lightly rubbing spices into the fish as you go. Use all the spice mix.

Pan-Seared Salmon with Cilantro Lime Sauce / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Heat olive oil in a large non-stick skillet on medium-high heat. Once oil is hot, place the salmon fillets gently into the hot skillet (with the top side down).  Cook 4 minutes, without moving the salmon. After 4 minutes, the bottom of the salmon should be crispy and golden brown. Carefully turn salmon to other side, and cook for 2-3 minutes (or until cooked through).

Pan-Seared Salmon with Cilantro Lime Sauce / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Remove salmon from skillet and transfer to individual serving plates. Drizzle the cilantro lime sauce over the top of the salmon.

Pan-Seared Salmon with Cilantro Lime Sauce / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Garnish each piece of salmon with a sprig of cilantro.  Serve… and enjoy the wonderful taste! See how very easy, quick, and effortless it is to make this tasty main dish?

Pan-Seared Salmon with Cilantro Lime Sauce / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

This would be a great way to serve a healthy meal on a busy evening or after a long day at work… in no time at all. Hope you’ll give this recipe a try. I’m confident you will enjoy it!

Pan-Seared Salmon with Cilantro Lime Sauce / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Recipe Source: http://www.cookingclassy.com/skillet-seared-salmon-with-creamy-cilantro-lime-sauce/

Pan-Seared Salmon with Cilantro Lime Sauce
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Pan-seared salmon pairs well with a creamy cilantro lime sauce, and the best part? This delicious dish is ready in about 10 minutes!!!
As Prepared By:
Recipe type: Entree
Serves: 4 servings
Ingredients
For salmon:
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil
  • 4 (6 ounce) skinless salmon fillets (1" thick)
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • ½ teaspoon ground coriander
  • ⅛-1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (to taste)
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
For Cilantro Lime Sauce:
  • ½ cup sour cream
  • 2 green onions, roughly chopped
  • ½ cup packed cilantro (mostly leaves)
  • 1½ Tablespoons fresh squeezed lime juice
  • 1 clove garlic, peeled/sliced thinly
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
Directions
  1. Take salmon fillets out from refrigeration and let them sit (at room temp.) while you make cilantro lime sauce. To make the sauce, place sour cream, chopped green onions, cilantro, garlic, lime juice, sliced garlic, and salt in a food processor or blender. Process the sauce until the cilantro leaves are finely chopped or minced. Set sauce aside while cooking salmon.
  2. Place cumin, coriander, cayenne pepper, salt and pepper in a small bowl, and mix well, to combine spices. Pat all sides of salmon fillets dry, using a paper towel. Sprinkle spice mixture evenly over both sides of salmon, lightly rubbing spices into the fish as you go. Use all the spice mix.
  3. Heat 2 Tablespoons olive oil in a large non-stick skillet on medium-high heat. Once oil is hot, place the salmon fillets gently into hot skillet (with top side down). Cook 4 minutes, without moving the salmon. After 4 minutes, the bottom of the salmon should be crispy and golden brown. Carefully turn salmon to other side, and cook for 2-3 minutes (or until cooked through).
  4. Remove salmon from skillet and transfer to individual serving plates. Drizzle the cilantro lime sauce over the top of the salmon. Garnish each piece of salmon with a sprig of cilantro. Serve, and enjoy!

Here’s one more to pin to your Pinterest boards!Pan-Seared Salmon with Cilantro Lime Sauce / The Grateful Girl Cooks! Absolutely delicious... and ready in about 10 minutes!

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Coconut Candied Cashews

Looking a great tasting snack that doesn’t take a lot of work?  How about these delicious Coconut Candied Cashews?  Made with coconut oil, coconut milk, sugar and coconut flakes, they will be an instant hit at any gathering where snacking is involved!Coconut Candied Cashews / The Grateful Girl Cooks! These coconut candied cashews will be a popular item at any gathering where snacking is involved! Delicious!
I found the original recipe for these candied cashews (Trader Joe’s inspired) on Pinterest, and thought they sounded wonderful!  The recipe is very straightforward, easy to make, and the results are amazingly delicious!  The only problem I have had is STAYING OUT OF THEM, because they are soooo good!  Here’s how to make ’em:

Begin by putting the cashews in a large bowl.  Melt the coconut oil and pour it over the cashews. Stir, to coat.

Coconut Candied Cashews / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
Whisk the canned coconut milk until fully blended, then pour 1/4 cup of it over the cashews. Stir again, to coat the cashews.

Coconut Candied Cashews / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
Add the granulated sugar. Stir, to fully coat cashews.

Coconut Candied Cashews / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Place a silicone liner onto a 9×13 baking sheet.  Gently spread the cashews out on the sheet.  Bake cashews at 300 degrees for 10 minutes. Remove from oven. Stir. Spread out cashews. Put back into oven and bake for 10 additional minutes. Remove from oven. Stir. Spread out cashews.   Put cashews back into oven and bake for 5 minutes. Remove from oven. (NOTE: During last 5 minutes of baking, pulse coconut flakes 7-9 times in a food processor until the flakes become fine, for next step).

Coconut Candied Cashews / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Sprinkle the finely processed coconut flakes over the cashews. Stir well, to coat the cashews. Spread cashews back out on the baking sheet. Place pan back into oven and bake for 10 minutes more.

Coconut Candied Cashews / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

The cashews will be done after 10 minutes OR when all of the syrupy liquid is gone from sheet.  Carefully remove hot pan from oven. Let cashews sit until cooled to room temperature. Once cool, separate any cashews that might have clumped together.

Coconut Candied Cashews / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Once cashews have cooled to room temperature and the coating has firmed up, they are ready to serve. Offer them to your family or guests on a pretty serving plate or in a bowl… and watch just how fast they disappear!!! They are so very good!

Coconut Candied Cashews / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Hope you will give this fun snack a try.  It really only took a few minutes to get them in the oven, then the only effort (if you can even call it “effort”) made was just keeping them stirred as they baked. Easy Peasy! You might also want to check out my recipe for Tex-Mex Party Nuts… they taste amazing, too!  Enjoy!

Coconut Candied Cashews / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Recipe Source: http://www.dessertnowdinnerlater.com/coconut-cashews/

Coconut Candied Cashews
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
These coconut candied cashews will be a popular item at any gathering where snacking is involved! Delicious!
As Prepared By:
Recipe type: Appetizer/Snack
Serves: 3 cups or 12 (¼ cup) servings
Ingredients
  • 3 cups cashew halves (Used roasted/salted cashews for salty/sweet balance)
  • 1 Tablespoon coconut oil, melted
  • ¼ cup coconut milk (from a can)
  • ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup sweetened coconut flakes
Directions
  1. Begin by putting cashews into a large bowl. Melt coconut oil and pour it over cashews. Stir, to coat.
  2. Whisk the canned coconut milk until fully blended, then pour ¼ cup of it over the cashews. Stir again, to coat the cashews. Add granulated sugar. Stir, to fully coat.
  3. Place a silicone liner onto a 9x13 baking sheet. Spread cashews out on the sheet. Bake cashews at 300 degrees for 10 minutes. Remove from oven. Stir. Spread out cashews. Put back into oven and bake for 10 additional minutes. Remove from oven. Stir. Spread out cashews. Put cashews back into oven and bake for 5 minutes. Remove from oven. (NOTE: During last 5 minutes of baking, pulse coconut flakes 7-9 times in a food processor until the flakes become fine, for next step).
  4. Sprinkle finely processed coconut flakes over cashews. Stir well, to coat the cashews. Spread cashews back out on baking sheet. Place in oven and bake 10 minutes more.
  5. The cashews will be done after 10 minutes OR when all of the syrupy liquid is gone from sheet. Carefully remove hot pan from oven. Let cashews sit until cooled to room temperature. Separate any cashews that might have clumped together. Once cashews have cooled to room temperature and coating has firmed up, they're ready to serve. Store in covered container.

Here’s one more to pin on your Pinterest boards!Coconut Candied Cashews / The Grateful Girl Cooks! These coconut candied cashews will be a popular item at any gathering where snacking is involved! Delicious!

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Pineapple Coconut Shrimp Kabobs

I recently made Pineapple Coconut Shrimp Kabobs to serve alongside some grilled tri-tip we had for dinner!  Hooray for homemade surf and turf! The shrimp (marinated in a coconut milk and citrus sauce), pineapple chunks, and red and green bell peppers are cooked on skewers on the BBQ grill and taste fantastic!Pineapple Coconut Shrimp Kabobs / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
The “recipe” is very easy to prepare. The shrimp will need to marinate in a coconut milk citrus sauce for at least 1-2 hours. I made the citrus sauce (marinade) up early in the day, and let the shrimp marinate in the refrigerator until I was ready to thread the skewers and cook the dish.   Once that is done, the shrimp kabobs only take about 10 minutes to prepare the kabob skewers and 5 minutes to cook on the grill.

Here’s how to make these delicious kabobs: Place the canned coconut milk (stir it well), Tabasco sauce, soy sauce, orange juice and lime juice in a medium-sized bowl. Stir to combine. Reserve a little bit of the citrus sauce in a separate cup to brush on the kabobs while grilling, if desired).  Add peeled and deveined shrimp; turn to completely coat shrimp with sauce. Cover and refrigerate for 1-2 hours (or more), turning shrimp occasionally. (Note: I cut the recipe in half since it was only for my husband and I, so my photos reflect that).

Pineapple Coconut Shrimp Kabobs / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
**Tip – I pan-seared the bell pepper pieces in a medium-high heat “dry” skillet (no oil) before threading them onto the skewers, but this an optional step (only took 3-4 minutes). Because the shrimp cook so very quickly once added to the grill, I like to have the peppers cooked just a bit BEFORE they go on to the grill.  You don’t have to do this step, but it helps to really make sure the bell peppers get cooked through so they are not totally crispy when served.

Pineapple Coconut Shrimp Kabobs / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

I used metal skewers for the kabobs, but if you will be using wooden skewers, be sure to soak them in water for at least half an hour before threading the shrimp, fruit, veggies, etc., so they won’t catch fire on the grill.

Remove the shrimp from the marinade , and thread the skewers, alternating the shrimp with red and green bell peppers and pineapple chunks.  Heat BBQ grill up to a medium-high heat. Brush the grill with oil, then put the kabobs onto the hot grill.  Cook the kabobs for 3 minutes, brushing with the reserved sauce, if desired.

Pineapple Coconut Shrimp Kabobs / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
Turn the skewers over and cook the other side of the kabobs for 2-3 minutes, until shrimp turn pink and are cooked through.

Pineapple Coconut Shrimp Kabobs / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

When the shrimp are done, remove skewers from grill and place onto serving plate. If desired, garnish the serving plate with chopped fresh cilantro leaves and sliced green onions.

Pineapple Coconut Shrimp Kabobs / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Pineapple Coconut Shrimp Kabobs / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Serve with the shrimp, etc. still on the skewers, or remove food from skewer (your choice) and serve while hot.

Pineapple Coconut Shrimp Kabobs / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

This dish is extremely easy to prepare, light in calories, looks great on the plate, and tastes really, really good! I hope you will consider trying this recipe, and trust you will enjoy it, as we did!

Pineapple Coconut Shrimp Kabobs / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Recipe Source: http://www.wellplated.com/coconut-pineapple-shrimp-skewers/

Pineapple Coconut Shrimp Kabobs
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
As Prepared By:
Recipe type: Entree
Serves: 4 Servings
Ingredients
For Citrus Marinade:
  • ½ cup coconut milk
  • 4 teaspoons Tabasco Original Red Sauce
  • 2 teaspoons soy sauce
  • ¼ cup fresh squeezed orange juice
  • ¼ cup fresh squeezed lime juice (approx. 2 limes)
For Kabobs:
  • 1 pound large (31-40 count) shrimp, peeled/deveined (fresh or frozen)
  • ¾ pound 1 inch pineapple chunks (fresh or canned)
  • Red and green bell peppers (seeded, cut into 1-2 inch chunks)
  • Oil, for grilling
  • Fresh chopped green onion, for garnish
  • Fresh chopped cilantro, for garnish
Directions
  1. Place canned coconut milk (stir it well), Tabasco sauce, soy sauce, orange juice and lime juice in a medium-sized bowl. Stir well, to combine. Reserve a little bit of the citrus marinade in separate cup to brush on the kabobs while grilling.
  2. Add peeled and deveined shrimp to medium bowl with marinade; turn to completely coat. Cover and refrigerate for 1-2 hours (or more, if desired), turning the shrimp occasionally.
  3. If desired, pan-sear bell pepper pieces in a medium-high heat "dry" skillet (no oil) before threading them onto the skewers (optional - cook about 3 minutes). It helps to do this BEFORE the peppers go on the grill, to ensure they are cooked through, since the shrimp cook so quickly.
  4. Remove shrimp from marinade and thread the skewers, alternating the shrimp with red and green bell peppers and pineapple chunks. Heat BBQ grill to a medium-high heat level. Lightly brush the grill with oil, then put the kabobs onto the grill. Cook the kabobs for 3 minutes, brushing with the reserved sauce. Turn the skewers over and cook the other side of the kabobs for 2-3 minutes, until shrimp turn pink and are cooked through. When the shrimp are done, remove skewers from grill and place onto serving platter. Garnish the serving platter with sliced green onions and chopped fresh cilantro leaves. Serve kabobs still on the skewers, OR remove/slide food from skewers onto individual plates and serve while hot. Enjoy!
Notes
I used metal skewers for the kabobs, but if you will be using wooden skewers, be sure to soak them in water for at least half an hour before threading the shrimp, fruit, veggies, etc., so they won't catch fire on the grill.
Note: If using canned coconut milk (as I did), you will have some extra. It freezes well, so you can save it to use on another recipe or the next time you make THIS recipe!

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Swiss Chard with Bacon and Mushrooms

Recently I cooked Swiss Chard with Bacon and Mushrooms as a side dish for dinner, and was pleased with the results. The addition of bacon, mushrooms, onion and garlic to Swiss chard made this quite a flavorful vegetable dish!Swiss Chard with Bacon and Mushroms / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
I started growing rainbow chard in my garden several years ago, so I enjoy trying new ways to prepare it (in the photo below you can see the young chard-with red and white stalks, growing in our garden)!  Swiss chard is a leafy green vegetable that has been around for centuries. The chard develops large stalks, once mature. The leaves can be green or slightly red, and the stalks can vary in color, such as white, yellow or red. The leaves are very nutritious, and fresh young leaves can be eaten raw in salads.  For this recipe I used red chard, and did not use a published recipe, only my ideas for what might taste good.

Swiss Chard with Bacon and Mushroms / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Here’s how I made this veggie side dish:

Stack bacon pieces on top of each other. Using a sharp knife, slice bacon into thin strips. Place bacon pieces (sliced) into a large skillet. Cook on medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until bacon pieces begin to brown (3-4 minutes). Leave all bacon grease in the skillet (this photo is from another recipe, but shows how I slice the bacon).
Swiss Chard with Bacon and Mushroms / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Add chard stems, sliced mushrooms and chopped red onion to the bacon and bacon drippings in the skillet. Continue to cook until chard stems become slightly tender (3-4 mins).  Add chopped chard leaves, and stir to combine. Continue to cook on medium heat, stirring occasionally, until leaves have wilted and are cooked through (2-3 minutes).

Swiss Chard with Bacon and Mushroms / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Add minced garlic and stir to combine. Cook for 1 minute, being careful to not burn the garlic. Add salt and pepper, to taste.

Swiss Chard with Bacon and Mushroms / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Serve hot.

Swiss Chard with Bacon and Mushroms / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

I cut the Swiss Chard stalks into fairly large slices as you can see from the photos, so if you prefer smaller bites, slice them to the thickness you prefer.  Hope you will consider trying this recipe, and as always, I sincerely hope you enjoy it!

Swiss Chard with Bacon and Mushroms / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Swiss Chard with Bacon and Mushrooms
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Swiss chard, bacon, onion and mushrooms are featured in this easy to prepare vegetable side dish.
As Prepared By:
Recipe type: Vegetable Dish
Serves: 4 servings
Ingredients
  • 4-5 slices bacon, (cut into thin pieces before cooking)
  • 8-10 mushrooms, sliced thin
  • ¼ cup chopped red onion
  • 3 Tablespoons bacon grease (approx. from cooked bacon)
  • 1 head Swiss chard (I used red chard), chopped and divided (stems separated from leaves)
  • 1 teaspoon minced garlic
  • Salt and Pepper to taste
Directions
  1. Stack bacon pieces on top of each other. Using a sharp knife, slice into thin strips. Place bacon pieces (sliced) into a large skillet. Cook on medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until bacon pieces begin to brown (3-4 minutes). Leave all bacon grease in the skillet.
  2. Add chard stems, sliced mushrooms and chopped red onion. Continue to cook until chard stems become slightly tender (3-4 mins).
  3. Add chopped chard leaves, and stir to combine. Continue to cook on medium heat, stirring occasionally, until leaves have wilted and are cooked through (2-3 minutes).
  4. Add minced garlic and stir to combine. Cook for 1 minute, being careful to not burn the garlic.
  5. Add salt and pepper to taste, then serve while hot.

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EASY CHEESY Penne Pasta And Spinach Bake

This EASY CHEESY Penne Pasta and Spinach Bake may not be the poster child for “Good-Looking” meals, but what it lacks in looks, it makes up for in TASTE! This meatless pasta dish, with three Italian cheeses, tastes wonderful, and is incredibly easy to prepare!EASY CHEESY Penne Pasta and Spinach Bake / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
I came up with this simple recipe one day while brainstorming what to make for dinner. After taking stock of what I had in my refrigerator and pantry, I decided to make this recipe using what I already had in the house. The results? A really good, SIMPLE to prepare meal!  Since I was creating a meal off the top of my head, I didn’t document the process too well with photos.  So these photos are just to give you an idea… trust me, the meal tastes a LOT better than it looks in these pictures.

The recipe is very straightforward.  Penne pasta is cooked and drained, then spaghetti sauce (flavor/variety of your choice-homemade or store-bought), three cheeses (mozzarella, Parmesan and ricotta), garlic powder and fresh chopped spinach  are added and mixed together.  The pasta is then placed into a 9×13 pan that has been sprayed with a non-stick spray.

EASY CHEESY Penne Pasta And Spinach Bake / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

The pasta is then topped with additional mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses.

EASY CHEESY Penne Pasta And Spinach Bake / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Pasta is baked (covered with aluminum foil) for 20 minutes, then foil is removed and continues baking for 5 more minutes (uncovered). That’s it!  Serve the pasta hot… and enjoy! It may not be the most “appetizing” looking photo I’ve ever taken, but it really is GOOD!

EASY CHEESY Penne Pasta And Spinach Bake / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Hope you will give this recipe a try! It is filling, filled with flavor, and is a cinch to prepare!  The leftovers were good, too!

EASY CHEESY Penne Pasta And Spinach Bake / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

EASY CHEESY Penne Pasta And Spinach Bake
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Penne Pasta is baked with spaghetti sauce, three cheeses, and fresh spinach in this easy, tasty, and filling casserole.
As Prepared By:
Recipe type: Casserole
Serves: 4-6 servings
Ingredients
  • ¾ pound penna pasta
  • Marinara sauce (homemade or use a jar of sauce-need enough for 4 servings)
  • 1 cup grated mozzarella
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • ½ cup Ricotta cheese
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1½ cups chopped fresh spinach
  • Additional Mozzarella and Parmesan cheese for topping casserole (1/4 cup each)
Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a 9x13 pan with non-stick spray.
  2. Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain. Place pasta in large mixing bowl.
  3. Add spaghetti sauce, mozzarella, Parmesan and ricotta cheeses, fresh chopped spinach, plus garlic powder. Stir into pasta until ingredients are fully coated and combined.
  4. Pour pasta into prepared 9x13 pan. Add additional mozzarella and Parmesan cheeses to top.
  5. Cover pan with aluminum foil and bake at 350 degrees for 20 minutes. Remove foil and cook for 5 more minutes. Remove pan from oven and serve pasta immediately.
Notes
Number of servings will depend on the size portion you serve.

Here’s one more to pin on your Pinterest boards!EASY CHEESY Penne Pasta and Spinach Bake / The Grateful Girl Cooks! EASY to prepare, delicious and filling, this simple casserole features 3 Italian cheeses!

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One Pan Greek Chicken And Orzo

If you enjoy the convenience of one pot meals, I’m sure you will LOVE this recipe for One Pan Greek Chicken And Orzo… a delicious, flavor-filled dish that’s ready to eat in 30 minutes!One Pan Greek Chicken And Orzo / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
My husband and I just returned from a week in Hawaii, and truthfully, I wasn’t too thrilled about preparing dinner (after being spoiled by eating out for a week!)… BUT… I found this recipe from Joanna Cismaru while searching Pinterest and decided to try it, since it was quick and easy!  I’m sure glad I did, because we loved this meal! Pan-seared, lightly seasoned chicken thighs cook alongside orzo pasta in white wine and chicken broth, then are topped with kalamata olives, crumbled feta cheese, fresh parsley, lemon wedges, and served. YUM!

The dish is really easy to prepare, as well. Here’s how:

  1. Mix together all-purpose flour, smoked paprika, garlic powder, salt and black pepper in a medium bowl.
  2. Pat chicken thighs dry using a paper towel.  Dredge chicken thighs in the seasoned flour mixture, coating all sides.
  3. Heat 1 Tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet (on medium-high heat). Carefully add chicken thighs to hot oil. Cook them for 4 minutes, without moving them in skillet.
  4. Flip chicken over and cook the other side for 3-4 minutes until crispy and well-browned.

One Pan Greek Chicken And Orzo / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Remove chicken to a plate and let rest. (Don’t worry if it’s not all the way done – the chicken will finish cooking later!).

One Pan Greek Chicken And Orzo / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Add 1 Tablespoon olive oil back into the skillet you cooked the chicken in and turn heat to medium.  Add chopped onion, minced garlic, red pepper flakes, thyme and oregano. Stir, and cook for 1 minute.  Add salt and pepper to lightly season.

One Pan Greek Chicken And Orzo / The Grateful Girl Cooks!
Pour in the uncooked orzo.

One Pan Greek Chicken And Orzo / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Pour in the white wine and the chicken broth, then stir to combine ingredients.  Once the ingredients are stirred, bring liquid to a boil, then reduce the heat down to medium.

One Pan Greek Chicken And Orzo / The Grateful Girl Cooks!Next…

  1. Place the chicken thighs into the skillet on top of the orzo.
  2. Cover skillet with a lid; cook for 10 minutes (or until the orzo is fully cooked).
  3. Remove skillet from heat; remove lid.
  4. Add kalamata olives, crumbled feta cheese, chopped fresh parsley, and lemon wedges to the skillet as garnish.

One Pan Greek Chicken And Orzo / The Grateful Girl Cooks!Serve… and ENJOY!  This dish not only looks good, it tastes great!  The orzo is seasoned perfectly, and the chicken is juicy and delicious!

**Note:  The recipe as written, serves 4 (two thighs per serving). When I prepared this meal, I cut the recipe in half, since it was just my husband and I eating it!) 

One Pan Greek Chicken And Orzo / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

One Pan Greek Chicken And Orzo / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

We really, really enjoyed this dish, and I know it will be made again and again in our home. It truly did only take 30 minutes, from start to finish!  What a perfect dinner for those crazy busy evenings when you want something delicious for dinner, but don’t want to take too long (or are too tired) to fuss over it!

One Pan Greek Chicken And Orzo / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

I really hope you will consider trying this wonderful chicken “one pan wonder” recipe! My hope is that you find it just as delicious as we did!  Have a wonderful day, and make the most out of each minute you’ve been given!

One Pan Greek Chicken And Orzo / The Grateful Girl Cooks!

Recipe Source: http://www.jocooks.com/recipes/one-pot-greek-chicken-orzo/

One Pan Greek Chicken And Orzo
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
This One Pan Chicken and Orzo dinner is ready in 30 minutes and is filled with classic Greek flavors from seasonings, kalamata olives and feta cheese. YUM!
As Prepared By:
Recipe type: Entree
Serves: 4 servings (2 thighs per serving)
Ingredients
  • ½ cup all purpose flour
  • 1 Tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • Salt & Pepper, to taste (approx. ¼ teaspoon of each)
  • 8 chicken thighs (boneless, skinless)
  • 2 Tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 large white onion, chopped
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes
  • 1 Tablespoon fresh thyme, chopped
  • ½ Tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1½ cups orzo pasta (uncooked)
  • 1 cup white wine
  • 2 cups chicken broth
  • ¾ cup kalamata olives (pitted and drained - room temp)
  • ¼ cup feta cheese, crumbled (room temp)
  • 2 Tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
  • ½ lemon, sliced into wedges
Directions
  1. Mix together all-purpose flour, smoked paprika, garlic powder, salt and black pepper in a medium bowl. Pat chicken thighs dry using a paper towel. Dredge chicken thighs in the seasoned flour mixture, coating all sides.
  2. Heat 1 Tablespoon olive oil in a large skillet (on medium-high heat). Carefully add chicken thighs to hot oil. Cook them for 4 minutes, without moving them in skillet. Flip chicken over and cook the other side for 3-4 minutes until crispy and well-browned. Remove chicken to a plate and let rest. (Don't worry if it's not all the way done - the chicken will finish cooking later!).
  3. Add 1 Tablespoon olive oil back into the skillet you cooked the chicken in and turn heat to medium. Add chopped onion, minced garlic, red pepper flakes, thyme and oregano. Stir, and cook for 1 minute. Add salt and pepper to lightly season.
  4. Pour in the uncooked orzo. Pour in the white wine and the chicken broth, then stir to combine ingredients. Once the ingredients are stirred, bring liquid to a boil, then reduce the heat down to medium. Place the chicken thighs into the skillet on top of the orzo. Cover skillet with a lid; cook for 10 minutes (or until the orzo is fully cooked).
  5. Remove skillet from heat; remove lid. Add kalamata olives, crumbled feta cheese, chopped fresh parsley, and lemon wedges to the skillet as garnish. Serve, and enjoy!
Notes
Don't have boneless chicken thighs? Use chicken thighs with bones, but cook chicken about 1 minute longer per side when pan-searing.

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